Arrived at Centennial Airport at around 0415 to take the 5am flight to Cebu. I will be travelling with Tita Auring (a close family friend) and family to Cebu to meet Ninang and go on a tour. We arrived at Mactan Airport at around 6am, went to Waterfront Lahug immediately to have our breakfast. After our breakfast we immediately went to Cebu Pier to catch the 9am Cebu-Tagbilaran trip of Ocean Jet. They still had that Libre-Balik Promo, so the Cebu-Tagbilaran-Cebu trip cost us only Php550 per person which should have been Php 1100/person. Neat!!!
We arrived at Tagbilaran pier around 11am, we were met by Ms. Ferlie who will be our tour guide for the day. She was Ninang’s tour guide from her previous Bohol visit, so we got a very good deal from her. Our first stop was the Loboc River Cruise, it cost us Php200 per person for the whole cruise, with on-board buffet lunch. As we cruised down the river, we were serenaded by self-proclaimed singers. Hehe. Kidding, they were really good.
It was a refreshing sound for my ears to hear Pamela One, Ocho Ocho and Bulaklak being played on a classic guitar and sang with a bit of an “oldies” touch to it. Anyway, back to the cruise, it was a relaxing and cool ride, with trees all around and no “ilog-smell” at all. The whole cruise lasted for about 45minutes, with a brief stop at Busay where you can just enjoy looking at the mini waterfalls.
After this very relaxing cruise, we then headed to see the tarsier. I think it was tagged as the smallest primate in the world. I’ve seen in a recent feature of Bohol in Living Asia, that the tarsier can actually move its head upto 180-degree arc. Interesting!
Moving on we headed to see the most famous tourist spot of Bohol, the Chocolate Hills. It was indeed enigmatic, God must have loved the Filipinos for giving us such natural wonders. But still, the Banaue Rice Terraces tops my list. We headed towards Baclayon Church afterwards, the oldest church in Bohol. Inside the church, we visited the museum where some old artifacts and relics were kept. A bit creepy if you ask me, hehe. The stillness of the surroundings, the deafening silence and the old things around you can really give you the creeps specially if you’re as imaginative as I am.
After that visit, we headed towards Tagbilaran pier to catch the 5pm trip of Ocean Jet back to Cebu. Arrived at Cebu at around 7pm, freshened up a little, then went to Double A restaurant to have our dinner. (double burp!) Afterwards, we went back to Waterfront. Some of the oldies went up for a spin at the casino inside the hotel, while I stayed at the hotel lobby to just slack around and listen to the live acoustic band playing there.
On our second day after our buffet breakfast, we had the Cebu City Tour. We headed to Sto.Nino church to attend the mass, which by the way was in Bisaya. We went to the Magellan’s Cross afterwards and bought a guitar for Php900, original price was Php1500. I’m traveling with hagglers. :p
We headed to Carbon afterwards to buy all those pasalubongs, then we went to the Grand Majestic to have our buffet lunch. I must say that every meal we had for this entire trip was buffet. Grand Majestic is a Chinese restaurant which served the best peking duck I have ever tasted. Php350 per person for the buffet lunch. Not bad.
Anyways, the rest of the group took the 3pm flight that day, while I was booked on the 1pm flight 2 days after. So I still have 3 days/2nights to slack around Cebu. After the group left, I met Celine and her lovely daughter at Ayala Center. We had our dose of caffeine for the day at Starbucks. They were headed to Manila the very next day so they couldn’t stay long.
After they left, I waited for like forever before Lorenz (my personal tour guide for this trip) arrived. Again, not that am complaining. We went to have dinner with the rest of Travelex Cebu Staff at some hole-in-the-wall restaurant. It was much like a carinderia but it serves really tasty food. Too bad I was still full from all those buffet meals I’ve had.
After our dinner, we looked for a cheap pension house around the city. Bummer isn’t it? I stayed in the lofty Waterfront during my first night, now am looking for the cheapest room I can get myself into. I then settled in an unnamed pension house, I really have no choice but to take it since every pension houses we went into were full for the night. It costs Php650 per night. I don’t remember what it’s called but I’d rather not mention it anyway because it really wasn’t that good.
Anyway, moving on, we went to pick up Faye, the Cebuana friend I’ve met during my first Cebu trip, then headed on to ASLE, an acoustic band was playing when we arrived. I must say that Cebu bands are great! “With or without you” by U2 being sang by a soft woman’s voice was new to my ear. Anyway, after much U2 songs sang, our next stop was another bar where we met another officemate. The band playing was performing some comic stands at the same time. GREAT! We capped the night off after eating a bowl of batchoy.
At around 7pm the next day, after finding a much better pension house for me to stay in (Mayflower Php450/night), we headed to Handuraw where my tour guide will be performing. He’s part of the band “Pandora”, which I must say will soon make a mark in the Philippines’ music industry. A band today, a legend tomorrow. After the gig, my supposed to be tourist guide shamelessly drifted off to neverland, thankfully his brother was with him to drop me off at Mayflower. =) I asked the front desk agent if she knows a good place where I can have a massage and is still open at that time. (2am) The agent willingly looked at the yellow pages and after much fumbling and dialing on the phone she asked the concierge (better known as the guard hehehe) to hail me a cab and direct me to this cozy little massage parlor.
I went back to Manila the next day. Anyway, I really enjoyed this trip. Bohol was enigmatic while Cebu is lovelier the second time around. 🙂